The Effect of Visual and Etymological Treatments on Learning Decomposable Idioms among EFL Learners

Nassim Golaghaei, Sedigheh Kakolian


The present study endeavors to investigate the impact of visual and etymological treatments on learning idioms among English language learners. Seventy-nine intermediate students at Rooz Academy Language School in Babol were selected from among a total number of 116 learners based on their performances on the Longman complete course for the TOEFL test to fulfill the purpose of the study. The students were then assigned into three experimental groups. Initially, a pre-test of idiomatic expressions including 48 idiomatic items was administered to the participants in all groups. During the instructional period, the groups were taught a group of abnormally decomposable idioms through different treatments, namely, visual, etymological, and a combination of visual-etymological elaboration. At the end of the instructional period, the participants in all groups were given a posttest which was the same as the pretest. The design of this study is quasi-experimental. The data obtained was analyzed using one-way ANOVA analysis. The results of data analysis revealed that the etymological treatment was more effective than visual aids on learning idioms among intermediate English language learners. However, the visual-etymological treatment was the most effective one. The findings of this study have implications for EFL teachers, students, and materials developers.


Visualization, Etymology, Idiom, Dual coding theory

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